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As Schultz Steps Down, Next Starbucks CEO Brings Tech Savvy

  • Johnson, a 33-year veteran of tech industry, starts in April
  • Coffee chain has led competitors in adopting mobile payments
Bloomberg business news

Starbucks’ Schultz to Step Down as CEO

Updated on

After turning Starbucks Corp. into the world’s largest coffee chain, Chief Executive Officer Howard Schultz will hand the reins to a lieutenant who could solidify its role as a technology company.

Kevin Johnson, a 33-year veteran of the tech industry who became Starbucks’ chief operating officer last year, will take the helm from Schultz on April 3. The move is a nod to the company’s growing reputation for innovation: It introduced the world’s first successful mobile-payment service, beating out the likes of Apple Inc. and Google Inc., and gets an increasingly large portion of its revenue from that source.